It Was The Day Blue Died

And not the color blue.  Blue, the Dog, died last Monday.

I’m huddled away in my man cave, inspired by a fresh night’s sleep to write my cousin.  A fresh cup of coffee in my hand.  Justin followed me down the stairs, curious to see what I’m doing.  So while I glance at my emails, Justin notices a wrapper for Cadbury Mini Eggs–the ones that were on sale after Easter.  He says, “Hey, Mini Eggs!” with a tone to imply I’d been holding out on him.  I respond, “The same ones I left you and your Sister for an after-school snack earlier this week.”  Justin pauses for a second.  Looking contemplative he says, “Yes, the ones we ate on the day that Blue died.”

Blue was my Brother-in-law’s dog.  He died this last week, and while I was at work, my Wife, Daughter, and Son had gone to the Vet-Hospital where Blue spent his last day.  Justin’s Uncle had invited the family to come down and say goodbye.  It was an emotional thing for my kids, more than I had realized.  For years the kids had helped take care of Blue when my Brother-in-Law and family were away.  During that time, I hadn’t noted the bond that developed between my kids and Blue.

It makes me wonder at how things that get linked up in our memory.  It’s like we spend all these energies to create an big events or important days, and yet the stories that we remember in our lives end up getting connected to the things we don’t expect.  Often these things are trivial, secondary, or seemingly insignificant.  Maybe a song, or a scent, or some article of clothing.  Today, it was Eggs.

So in my mind, I anticipate that next Easter, Cadbury MiniEggs will remind me about Justin’s sadness towards Blue’s death.



Today, I was reminded about the importance of time.  Spending time.  Spending time with the people we love.  Someone mentioned to me that the idea of “quality time” is really just a myth.  Quality time, the idea, would seem to imply that a person could compress it–make minutes count more than usual.  But I can’t.  Every moment has 60 seconds and it remains out of my control to change that.

The term Quality time would imply giving the best moments (or moments jam packed with happiness).  I have a friend who referred to her husband as a Disneyland Dad.  The term confused me and my first mental picture was a dad wearing mickey mouse ears who was a little obsessed over Disney merchandising.  Not quite.  Apparently, a Disneyland Dad is one who shows up, tries to make his brief appearance into a “theme” park kind of day for his kids… and then later disappears not to be heard from for days again.

I’m not sure that we can even deliver quality time, and who is to say that we should strive for every moment to be a “Disney” moment with our loved ones?  Sometimes, the greatest life lessons, good and bad, come from just spending time together.  This isn’t to say that I would ever strive to make time spent with me pure misery, but rather that each moment might be one shared, and learned from each other.

Time is one of the most valuable things we have… I once had a boss who chastised me for affirming the statement that “Time is Money.”  Unfortunately, I don’t know why that upset him… I’m guessing it was my cocky delivery.  But truthfully, when I think about the context of time as a resource… I’m left to ponder if my kids rather have my money (spending more time at work to provide them more luxuries) or would they rather have my time?   I believe they’d rather have my time.

Truthfully, I’d rather spend more time with them then I would at work. Yet we, moms and dads, sell ourselves on this idea that if I just work a little harder, I’ll be able to provide a better life for…  usually it ends up being a lie, first to ourselves, then to everyone else.

So, the next time I plop myself down in front of the TV to waste a little time, God please help me to give my head a shake.  Take those precious moments, and invest them into the things that matter.